The new Honda Civic saloon is a dynamic and sophisticated four-door compact. It represents a significant step forward for Honda in the segment, benefiting from the largest single model global development programme in the company’s history.
“The creation of this tenth-generation Civic represents one of the most comprehensive and ambitious new model developments ever undertaken by Honda,” said Mitsuru Kariya, Chief Engineer and Global Project Leader. “As well as an unprecedented commitment of R&D resources, the process involved sales and manufacturing operations around the world, from North America and Japan, to Europe, South America and Asia. This car sets new benchmarks for the compact class in terms of dynamic performance, fuel efficiency, spaciousness, safety and interior quality.”
Building on its 40-year heritage, the car stays true to the original Civic concept of “a car for all people, a car for the world”. It is a marriage of distinctive design, sporty styling and versatile practicality – with a renewed focus on rewarding driving dynamics.
The purposeful silhouette makes a confident statement about the Civic saloon’s sporty character. The new car has a short front overhang and taut lines that reference the high levels of aerodynamic efficiency. A sharp and aggressive ‘face’, pronounced wheel-arches and sculpted front and rear intakes hint at the Civic’s sporting character.
With an assertive stance and advanced aerodynamics, the new Civic saloon advances the model’s design into the next era. The sleek and swept-back silhouette articulates a fresh and distinctive new Honda design direction that conveys a strong and sporty character. Sharp lines are complemented by the most comprehensive aerodynamic packaging in the segment, including complete underbody panelling.
The athletic look starts with low and wide proportions which reflect an increased footprint. The new Civic saloon is 46 mm wider, 74 mm longer and 20 mm lower than its four-door predecessor. These generous dimensions underpin the distinctive design and sporty styling, while also facilitating rewarding dynamics and increased interior space.
New larger and wider wheels and tyres further emphasise the wide stance, while the long wheelbase, short front overhang and sweeping cabin area further add to the dynamic feel of the exterior.
The new Civic saloon is available in seven exterior paint finishes: solid Rallye Red and Taffeta White, metallic Lunar Silver, Polished Metal and Brilliant Sporty Blue, and pearlescent Crystal Black and Midnight Burgundy.
“What we sought to instil in the completely rejuvenated new Civic was genuine charisma,” comments Mitsuru Kariya, Chief Engineer and Global Project Leader. “While this has to come from more than the styling, the athletic external appearance must allude to the dynamic attributes and technologies that lie within.”
The Civic’s development team sought to achieve the most aerodynamically efficient body in its class, balancing low aerodynamic drag with high-speed stability. It achieved this through careful management of airflow over and under the car to minimise lift.
Advanced designs for the A-pillar and front and rear bumpers minimise disturbance of the passing air and the front grille is shaped to reduce engine cooling air losses. Under-engine and under-floor covers provide an almost entirely flat vehicle underside, while the short front overhang also contributes to improved aerodynamic efficiency. Stamped steel exhaust silencers are aerodynamically shaped and eliminate the need for an additional underside cover at the rear of the vehicle.
The flush-mounted windscreen and side window glass and minimised panel gaps further improve aerodynamic performance.
Recognising that customers in the new Civic’s global target markets now expect European standards of quality, refinement and dynamic performance, the Civic development team planned Honda’s biggest ever single model engineering programme to create an entirely new car from the ground up.
The objective was to realise a dynamic rejuvenation of the Civic that would make it competitive with the best in the segment. From the earliest stage of platform development, the engineering team benchmarked the world’s best compact-class cars, including those from leading premium brands. This evaluation process ultimately served to define the new Civic’s targets in ride, handling, steering and NVH, as well as interior quality and overall refinement.
“From the very first stages, we defined our number-one objective for this new Civic as the creation of soulful performance,” said Mitsuru Kariya, Chief Engineer and Global Project Leader. “Dynamic performance targets were set and achieved through an exhaustive, gruelling regime of testing and development. The result is a platform that provides both superior driving stability and refinement, as well as a confidence-building, low-slung driving position.”
Advanced new unibody platform
The new platform’s design, the selection of materials, the engineering process, and novel manufacturing techniques have been key to creating a lighter, significantly more rigid structure. It is 16 kg lighter than that of the previous generation Civic saloon, while exhibiting 52 percent greater torsional stiffness.
The most agile and dynamically proficient Civic ever
The advanced platform provides an optimised foundation for the most sophisticated chassis dynamics set up in the Civic model’s history. The design team set themselves the target of achieving class-best handling and ride comfort.
Great attention was paid to the specific position of the suspension mounts to ensure optimal stiffness to enhance the suspension’s performance. For the first time on any Civic saloon, hydraulic fluid-filled compliance bushings at the front and rear result in superior ride isolation, as well as chassis vibration control. Furthermore, the new subframes at the front and the rear are specifically laid out so that cornering forces are transmitted more directly through the suspension to the subframes.
Agile Handling Assist (AHA)
Honda’s Agile Handling Assist (AHA) electronic stability system has been specially tuned for the European market to reflect typical road surface conditions and driving styles. It provides subtle, discreet assistance for added safety and smoother, more predictable vehicle behaviour at low and high speeds, and with both gentle and rapid steering inputs.
The new Civic’s platform engineering and exterior design deliver class-leading interior quietness and refinement through optimal noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) management. Exemplary refinement results from minimising the generation of noise and vibration and their transfer through the body structure, and by using thorough sound sealing and insulation.
Larger body panels on the new Civic are shaped and sculpted using computer aided engineering (CAE) to reduce ‘booming’, while the material combination between the A- and B-pillars and the floor sills reduces idle vibration.
The greatly increased refinement means a quieter, more relaxing interior with fewer distractions for the driver, allowing them to focus on the engaging experience behind the wheel.
The new Civic saloon is available with Honda’s latest 1.0-litre VTEC TURBO petrol engine, as well as the comprehensively-revised 1.6-litre i-DTEC diesel. Both powertrains offer powerful and efficient real-world performance, as well as low CO2 emissions.
Honda’s engineering heritage encompasses some of the most celebrated engines in the industry, and the latest VTEC TURBO engine is designed first and foremost to offer dynamic performance to support the new Civic’s soulful, fun-to-drive character. Nevertheless, it also achieves highly competitive fuel economy and efficiency. The 1.0-litre VTEC TURBO is available with either a six-speed manual transmission or a bespoke CVT automatic.
A highly efficient 1.6-litre i-DTEC diesel engine is also available in the new Civic saloon, offering an outstanding combination of performance and efficiency. Honda has made significant improvements to the engine and the exhaust system to maximise real-world performance. The latest diesel engine is available with a choice of six-speed manual or nine-speed automatic transmissions. Other features include:
The tenth-generation Civic range includes the choice of a diesel engine combined with an automatic gearbox – the first time this has been available for the Civic model.
With a wide spread of gears, the nine-speed transmission boasts superb efficiency: the very low first-gear ratio delivers a smooth and powerful launch, while a high top-gear ratio ensures low engine speed while cruising, which reduces fuel consumption and noise.
The spread of ratios in the gearbox means the automatic delivers smooth shifts, and a feeling of linear acceleration through the gears. Depending on the engine speed and throttle application, the transmission is also capable of ‘skipping’ gears for quick response, for example shifting down directly from 9th to 5th gear or from 7th to 4th gear, in addition to one- and two-gear downshifts.
* Applicable Regulation = Exhaust Emissions: Number of the base regulatory act and latest amending regulatory act applicable: EC 715/2007 / EU 2017/1347
The all-new Civic is set to continue the model’s reputation for providing class-leading practicality and unrivalled passenger and cargo space. High quality materials, a simple and sophisticated design theme, and new digital instrument binnacle display provide a fresh, premium interior ambience.
“The charismatic exterior design continues inside. It is a modern cabin in which advanced technologies and high-quality materials naturally work together to create an enhanced level of space and comfort, while the overriding sense of well-being is achieved through exceptional visibility, as well as an unmistakable feeling of safety and security. This is at the heart of our achievement in redefining the compact car the Honda way.”
More spacious passenger cabin - Aided in part by the longer, wider platform and longer wheelbase, front seat and rear seat occupants benefit from greater visibility and more space in which to enjoy the premium fit and finish.
Class-leading boot space and versatility - Behind the 60:40 split rear seats, the focus is not just on luggage volume – although with 519 litres, it is 20.8% larger than the previous model – but also on ease of access and versatility of the boot. The low sill and wide boot opening combine with the flat boot floor and 20.6% larger pass-through to make loading heavy, wider and longer items easy. The four-door Civic’s boot will accommodate four soft suitcases or four golf bags – one more of each compared to the previous Civic saloon.
The all-new interior is designed to offer the most comfortable and sophisticated cabin in the compact class and gives the all-new Civic a thoroughly modern, sleek and simple aesthetic to complement the sharply sculpted exterior. This is achieved with horizontal lines that accentuate the feeling of width and length, and therefore spaciousness. Technology is second to none in the ‘Technology centre’ console features a piano-black finish and was designed to follow a ‘technology centre’ theme.The New Civic now features a refrigerant with a much lower Global Warming Potential (GWP). Three-stage front seat heating and rear seat heating are also available on some grades.
The new Civic offers Brake Hold when temporarily stopped – for example, at traffic lights or busy junctions – as well as push-button start, keyless entry, and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror.
The new Civic is available with the second-generation of Honda’s Connect infotainment and connectivity system, which offers enhanced intuitive operation and full smartphone integration via both Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto.
The performance, stability and speed of the new Honda Connect system is delivered by a high performance Nvidia Tegra 3 quad core processor, which was specifically developed for extreme multitasking, ultra-smooth web browsing, brilliant graphics and rapid response to inputs. It also helps the display to present crisp, vivid, pin-sharp graphics and text on the seven-inch TFT-LCD touchscreen in the centre console.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are both included for the first time on a Civic saloon, which means that occupants can seamlessly integrate Honda Connect with the leading smartphone operating systems.
Honda Connect can be specified with optional Garmin satellite navigation, with pre-loaded maps, photo-real junction views, lane guidance, real-time traffic avoidance, 3D building and terrain views, and Eco Routing. Free map updates will be provided for five years, a benefit unique to Honda.
Options for the available audio configuration vary by grade, including an eight-speaker 180-watt output system, or high-power audio with 10 speakers (452-watt output).
The new Civic has been engineered to achieve industry-leading safety performance. The development team’s success in creating class-leading body rigidity and stiffness, in conjunction with a comprehensive suite of active safety technologies. These systems helped the new Civic – tested as a hatchback in 1.0-litre VTEC TURBO specification – to earn top ratings in the latest Euro NCAP tests (published November 2017). The Civic saloon shares the same safety structure and systems.
The Honda SENSING suite of active safety technologies includes:
Further safety technologies in the new Civic include:
Also fitted as standard are Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA®) with traction control, which enhances control capability while the vehicle is accelerating, braking, cornering, and Indirect Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS).